There are stories that have been told of a police officer or politician being found driving under the influence. They are taken by a fellow officer or another officer home in a patrol car and then the charges mysteriously vanish. While these stories might be in the minority, they do happen. When they do occur and are found out, those officers should face the appropriate punishment. The LA Times reports on an incident where a Fullerton Police officer filed a false police report while handling the DUI of a local politician.
In 2016, then-Fullerton City Manager Joseph Felz was involved in a car accident.
The incident occurred shortly after the November 2016 elections. Felz drove over a curb and crashed his car into a neighborhood tree. A witness to the accident called the police. When they arrived, they found Felz attempting to drive his disabled vehicle from the scene.
The officers who arrived on the scene called 45-year-old Rodger Corbett to the scene because of Felz’s position in the city.
Corbett conducted a “cursory examination” of Felz and gave him a ride home in his police car. Officers who initially arrived on the scene suspected that Felz was intoxicated, however, Corbett’s report indicated he was not under the influence.
A year later, Felz resigned as city manager and pleaded guilty to reckless driving involving alcohol. The Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office launched a probe into the conduct of the initial officers as well as Corbett.
Corbett has not been employed with the Fullerton Police Department since March 8, 2018, but it is not clear if he resigned or was terminated.
Last Tuesday, Corbett was charged with making a false report by a peace officer. If convicted, Corbett faces a maximum of three years in prison.